Exposé Online banner

Verdaguer — Humahuaca
(Record Runner RR-0060-2, 1994, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 1995-03-01

Humahuaca Cover artWith the recent reissues of the Mia catalog, Aquelarre, Crucis, and others, it seems that a lot of the best Argentinean music from the 70s is coming to light. Willy Verdaguer, while Argentinean by birth, spent most of those years working in Brazil with his group Humahuaca. While most of the music here was written and performed between '76 and '79, it was all re-recorded in '93, and released last year. The music here is a flavorful jazz-rock, injected with symphonics and spiced with rhythmic and flamenco influences, actually not far from the likes of Crucis, but with a bit more local color and unbridled jazz energy. Other points of comparison might be mid-period Kraan or early Transit Express, given the overt penchant for funkiness (as in "Galho de Arruda" or "Jogo da Memoria") and melodic savvy (as with the slower "Montanhas"), maybe even a touch of Banda Elastika. The seven-piece lineup features Verdaguer on bass, plus guitars, drums, keyboards, sax, flute, and percussion. Most of the nine tracks are instrumentals in the five-to-seven minute range, high energy jammers with plenty of sax and flute soloing. The compositions include plenty of hairpin turns and brilliant melodic mood shifts. Three tracks that don't seem to belong: the title track and a bluesy number "Rara Vez" that closes the disc, both vocal tunes sung by guest vocalist and producer Billy Bond, and "Pulomelu," an eleven minute instrumental suite that reminds me more of the Brazilian band Quantum on their self-titled debut than anything else on this album — yet it was that track that caught my ear on the first listen, while the others took an additional play or two to discover. In all, though, this one's a winner, heartily recommended for all fans of high-energy jazz-rock music.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 6, 1994 releases

Related artist(s): Willy Verdaguer

Latest news

2020-12-09
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more

2020-11-20
25 Views of Worthing Finally Gets Released – A while ago, we wrote about the discovery of a "long lost" Canterbury-style gem by a band called 25 Views of Worthing. And now we're pleased to find out that Wind Waker Records has released their music on an LP. » Read more

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Can - Box – Can's legacy in the progressive rock/experimental field is nothing short of legendary. What has been lacking is any real tangible support for the myth in the form of easy access for present day...  (2000) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues